For Immediate Release:
January 27, 2012
For more information contact:
Sherry Major | PGA Golf Exhibitions - 716.662.3855 |
Fun, optimism part of strong opening day
59th PGA Merchandise Show
What if you threw a party and everybody came? You'd have something like
the first day of the 2012 PGA Merchandise Show, where all of golf's
biggest companies turned out in full force to show their latest products
to thousands of PGA Professionals and golf shop merchandisers at the
Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., Jan. 26 - 28.
More than 1,000 companies welcomed thousands of PGA Professionals and
golf shop buyers from more than 80 countries to the 59th Show. Attendees saw the
latest in golf equipment, products and services, and apparel, as well as
a number of high-profile guest appearances. Jack Nicklaus and baseball
great Ken Griffey Jr. helped open the Show, and the rest of Thursday
included appearances by 2012 U.S. Ryder Cup Captain Davis Love III,
David Leadbetter, Michael Breed, Greg Norman, Butch Harmon, Natalie
Gulbis, Lexi Thompson, Johnny Damon and Win McMurry.
But the real life of the party was the wide
variety of new products on display. Product introductions from industry
leaders such as Titleist, Callaway Golf, TaylorMade, Ping and Wilson
were behind the buzz on the Show floor.
"I think consumers are going to be very excited by the new products for
2012," said Brad Bachand, the PGA head professional at Man O'War Golf in
Lexington, Ky., and the 2007 Kentucky PGA Section Merchandiser of the
Year for public facilities. "All the products we're seeing are so good,
you can't really go wrong."
The stage was set for an exciting day when the PGA Merchandise Show
opened with a musical performance by country music star Julie Roberts,
who sang an emotional rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner." Attention
then shifted to PGA President Allen Wronowski, who introduced Nicklaus
and Griffey. The pair then helped two local Boys & Girls Club members
hit ceremonial first shots using SNAG Golf equipment,
and the 59th PGA Merchandise Show was underway.
The length of the Show floor was filled with attendees who were ready to
place orders and learn about the latest golf merchandise.
"The Show is all about who's attending: For golf shops, they want to be
able to see everything under one roof; for manufacturers, we want to be
in front of all the great retail partners we work with throughout the
year," said Bob Philion, president of Cobra Puma Golf. "The more people
and companies you can get in one place, the more bang for your buck.
It's incredibly important for us to be able to see so many accounts in
"This is the capital of golf this week," agreed Raphael Peck, global
vice president of apparel, footwear and accessories for Oakley Golf.
"It's critically important to be here if you want to get your message
across to your customers."
With the Golf 2.0 initiative placing a focus on making golf fun, many
exhibits followed suit. Cobra Puma had an adult-sized ball slide, while
Travis Mathew had a blackjack table and the Golf 2.0 booth itself
offered attendees a chance to play video golf. The fun activities fit in
with the optimistic mood of the Show.
"The Show is amazingly upbeat and optimistic," said Wronowski, presiding
over his second PGA Merchandise Show as PGA President. "There's a lot of
excitement and buzz. Certainly it feels like there is recovery in the
Nicklaus' love for the
game fuels desire to see it prosper
Noting that "golf has given me everything
I have," and "I care about the game," legendary champion and course
architect Jack Nicklaus spent much of Thursday morning affirming to the
industry his belief that aspects of the game need to change in order for it
to prosper, and that Golf 2.0 is a major step in the right direction.
Nicklaus began the day with a short speech to open the 59th PGA
Merchandise Show, then, along with PGA President Allen Wronowski and PGA
CEO Joe Steranka, met with a group of multi-course owners to encourage
their support in implementing Golf 2.0 strategies at their facilities.
Shortly thereafter, he delivered the keynote address at the PGA Forum
Stage, where he and Steranka were joined by host Jimmy Roberts of NBC
Sports; Mike Davis, executive director of the U.S. Golf Association;
Frank Sanchez, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America;
and baseball superstar Ken Griffey Jr., who sits on the Boys & Girls
Clubs Board of Governors.
"I've always been a traditionalist, but I've realized that in order to
save the game we need to think outside the box," said Nicklaus. "This
plan (Golf 2.0) is the most comprehensive that's ever been put together,
it's not a Jack Nicklaus or PGA of America initiative, it's something
the whole industry needs to be involved in."
Nicklaus also touched on the need for "golf parks" to capture the
attention of kids and their families, and the importance of the Olympics
in making the game more relevant around the world. He concluded his
morning with a question and answer session with industry media
representatives at the PGA of America State of the Industry Roundtable.
Leading apparel brands
deliver innovative offerings
The Apparel Hall at the 2012
PGA Merchandise Show is flush with the latest fashions, fabrics and
styles from the industry's leading companies, as well as special events
such as fashion shows and celebrity appearances.
A new Fashion E-Studio will provide an exciting interactive destination
showcasing the latest trends from the biggest names in golf apparel and
accessories with live presentations throughout Show Week. Many
presentations are being streamed to a virtual audience.
The Fashion E-Studio is surrounded by multiple apparel, accessory and
footwear companies, making it a comprehensive, one-stop collection of
fashion trends from leading brands such as FootJoy, Puma, adidas, Cutter
& Buck, Antigua, Fairway & Greene and many more.
Puma's star continues to rise with a youth-driven offering that includes
pieces like the Duo-Swing mesh polo, quarter zip pullover and Golf SS
Kinetic jacket, all designed with layering in mind so the golfer can
adjust to changing weather.
"I think the younger market is really going to love this product," said
Brian Short, a PGA Professional at Penn State University Golf Course in
State College, Pa. "Puma is going to hit a different market that no one
else has really hit before."
FootJoy is introducing its second full apparel collection, which
includes four all-new contemporary color collections, exciting
performance pieces for all playing conditions, and an expanded
Athletic brands remain dominant in many golf shops, including Under
Armour, whose revolutionary new "coldblack" technology reflects the heat
of the sun so the athlete feels cooler and sweats less. Callaway offers
"core function" features like moisture wicking, strategic breathability
and UPF 30-plus protection, while adidas continues to impress for fall
by blending performance and innovation with unexpected styling.
For Cutter & Buck, the key to fall 2012 is "Warm Yarn" technology, which
uses a lightweight double-faced fabric to create an insulating layer
between your body and the garment.
"A lot of the detail and nuances in the line in our fall collection are
being received really well," said Stacy Mangum, brand director at Cutter
Luxurious cotton remains a strong point for Fairway & Greene, whose
sister company EP Pro offers easy-care performance fabrics in four
color-driven collections. Greg Norman Collection shows an enhanced
sweater presentation for men and a variety of color and pattern work for
About the PGA Merchandise Show
The PGA Merchandise Show is not
open to the public. Organized in partnership with The PGA of America as a trade-only event,
the 2012 PGA Merchandise Show will be held in the Orange County
Convention Center ~ 8:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. on Jan. 26-27; and 8:30 a.m. -
3:00 p.m. on Jan. 28. For more information, visit www.pgashow.com.
PGA Merchandise Show: Sherry Major, (716) 662-3855,
PGA of America: Jamie Carbone, (561) 624-8446,